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CSS Secrets: Better Solutions to Everyday Web Design Problems 1st Edition

4.9 out of 5 stars 55 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1449372637
ISBN-10: 1449372635
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Lea Verou is an Invited Expert in the W3C CSS Working Group, the committee that designs the CSS language, and previously worked as a Developer Advocate at the W3C, the Web's main standards organization. Currently, Lea conducts research in Human-Computer Interaction at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). She also blogs, speaks at international conferences, and codes popular open source projects to help fellow developers.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 392 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (July 3, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449372635
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449372637
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 0.8 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #25,010 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Right. So you are on your own... thinking... "Hey! I know CSS! Selectors, pseudo stuff and everything..."
And as a good CSSer that you are, you keep studying to keep improving, isn't that right? Good.

Then, one day, you find that one of your beloved masters, Lea Verou, wrote a book with some css secrets. And you think: "Cool. Secrets from her! I may find a thing or two to learn".

And you buy. And you read. And your brain explodes, because you have just found out that you actually knew almost nothing about CSS.

Lea Verou not only know the paths to solve problems with CSS, but she knows the WHYs behind each solution. And that's a HUGE difference.

I hope that the world will see more books from Lea Verou very soon.

Cheers to a true CSS bender.
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Format: Paperback
I have read some CSS books and they're all the same. Very encyclopedia. The colour, liveliness, and the way it is written allows for its encyclopedic contents to be read like a novel— each secret getting better and better.

Ever want to figure out how to do something on the web that you seen that looks really nifty? This book will either tell you how to do it or give you the building-blocks to figure it out for yourself
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Absolutely fantastic. A must-read for web designers and front-end developers. It's packed with actionable ideas and techniques, many of which I'd never seen before. (Context: I've been a web developer since 1999ish, co-created the Django web framework and have been wrestling with CSS for 15 years or so.)

Each chapter presents a specific web design "problem," along with a CSS solution (and sometimes multiple solutions). Some are simple, others are quite complex. Many are quite clever and will make you think of CSS differently. It's well-written and beautifully designed, with full-color pages and tons of informative footnotes.

The best part is that Lea talks through her thought process in developing each technique, "teaching a man to fish." In that sense, this book is great on two levels: it'll teach you specific techniques, and it'll teach you how to think when developing your *own* techniques for future web design problems.
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Format: Paperback
Reviews have been stellar both here and on @LeaVerou's Twitter account which finally led me to get my hands on a copy. First, there were a number of completely new bits that I was glad to put in my CSS quiver as well as novel ways of putting together familiar concepts to achieve results or work around peculiar issues. The former included `font-variant-ligatures`, `unicode-range` (and descriptor vs. property), steps() animation method, and the `resize` property which open a lot of opportunities for enhancing CSS, while the latter comprised a good number of the tips/recipes.

I think my favorite thing about the book is that, while you don't *need* a strong math background, she doesn't shy away from handing you the formulas from which she derives certain magic numbers. Too few design books are willing to do things as radical (pun intended) as using an actual square-root symbol, equations, or offering the linear algebra for `transform` properties (the linear algebra was high-level "transform to the origin, rotate, transform back" but still more mathy than any other CSS book that isn't a technical specification). There might be those designers who get scared off by a little math, but the book would be almost as useful even if you ignored the math bits.

Another highlight is the format of "here's what we're trying to accomplish, here's a mostly-obvious solution that comes close but has these issues (maybe with another one or two iterations)" followed by the final "let's address these issues and do it in a way that solves as many of those issues as we can".
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Format: Paperback
Lea Verou’s new book CSS Secrets is for frontend webdevelopers who use CSS in their daily work. The book assumes you already know, for example, CSS2 selectors, transforms and ::before/::after pseudo elements. But the book is still useful if you don’t. You do need to have a basic understanding of CSS, so if you’re still struggling with position: relative and position: absolute, you’ll better start with a beginner level book.

The book shows 47 “CSS Secrets”: problems you might encounter in your work and are not trivial to fix. This approach works very well. It’s much better than having long lists of features you still don’t know how to apply exactly. Every secret has nice illustrations and clear explanations of what the code does. With some secrets, Lea takes you through the thought process to the final solution.

The book is certainly not just a list of 47 problems and solutions, but it also shows you best practices, caveats and how to make your code backwards compatible. What’s really clever about this book is that it touches every important technology you should know about. Not only all important CSS features like CSS Animations, but also SASS, JavaScript and SVG. It doesn’t explain everything you can do, but it shows that it exists, how to use it in practice and it might trigger you to read more about it.

Lea put a lot of effort in this book and it shows: the layout and illustrations are beautiful and I didn’t find any errors or inconsistencies, although I do find them in most other computer books.

Since this book is published by O’Reilly, you might wonder why the book is not called CSS Cookbook, since it seems to fit in the popular cookbook series.
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